So I was thinking about the Vicodin the urgent care doctor prescribed to me a couple weeks ago when I went in to get a splinter dug out from under my big toe. He cut me and didn’t find the splinter because I had already dug it out. The doctor knocked the splinter off the counter where I’d placed it to show him when he returned and placed medical instruments where the sliver had been. He didn’t believe I’d already gotten it out and would not listen to me that he needed to look first before injecting me with a numbing agent and then cutting me. Alas, no splinter was found. I asked for a pain pill to take once back at work in case my toes started hurting. The doctor prescribed 15 or so. I stopped by Walmart and picked up that the antibiotics he’d prescribed too so I could start taking them. As the day wore on, my toe throbbed, but not enough. I took 3 advil and called it good.

As I drove home today, having bought and almost ate a 5″x5″ slab of peanut butter fudge as part of a bake sale fundraiser for a co-worker who had a stroke and was off work (it was a very good cause) (that’s my reasoning for being bad), I thought of all the things I wasn’t. I wasn’t a pill addict. I have trouble taking pills and still have the full bottle of Vicodin to show my therapist…but why? To show I’m not a pill addict. I have the means to become one, but that is not my drug of choice.

Sunday at the Moose Lodge, I went to their family picnic. I bought a butter shot in a 2 ounce plastic cup and nursed it for about 45 minutes. The bartender even put a little ice cube in it so it would be cold. It was just enough alcohol for me and it tasted sweet. One drink, 45 minutes, that’s not the mark of an alcoholic. So because I am not a pill addict or an alcoholic makes my overeating okay? No, it’s just that I’m a different kind of addict.


This morning

Woke up at 4:45 a.m. out of a dead sleep to my name being shouted. I thought someone was in my home–that a relative had keyed in and was calling me from downstairs. I lay still and listened. No one called my name again. Thinking that something might be wrong I began praying. My cousin Sue came to mind and I prayed protection and comfort over her and her family. I thought I would get a release and be able to slide back into sleep, but I didn’t. For the next 40 minutes I stared at the black wall beside my bed and rummaged through random thoughts.

I thought about cases at work, thought about a couple of cases that had not been updated with the information I found in the case from previous workers and what I would say to my boss when I sat down with him on Monday to go over them. I worried about cases I haven’t gotten to yet–the lady who called yesterday to ask when her food stamps would be on and I told her I was still missing one bank statement. She replied that she did not have any food in the home and was getting hungry. I told her about some local food banks and that the missing bank statement was holding up her case.

Realizing that sleep was finished for the night, I got up. Acid reflux kicked in, my chest hurt from it. “How many days had it been since I’d last taken Prilosec?” Too many. I went downstairs and refilled the three pill containers on the dinning room table. They are the only things–besides a Fall placemat with pictures of tiny pumpkins and a coaster absorbent stone–that I allow on the table. Once my housekeeper cleaned that room, which had been a catch-all for everything, I decided I would not place anything else on the table. So when I come home from work, I either put the item away or find another spot to stash it. My housekeeper cleaned the kitchen too, it and the livingroom have become the stash rooms.

Once the pills were refilled, I let the cats out onto the open back porch and sat down in the chair chained to the railing (so my neighbors don’t steal it). I watched the greyness of the night give way to the morning.

It was such a soft morning and none of the neighbors seemed to be up, so I decided to do something that I’ve never done before and walk to the corner gas station, which was about 500 yards away. I’ve walked to the local party store, about 25 yards away, but never to the gas station. As I walked, I kept my eyes down watching for cracks in the pavement so  as not to step on them and break my mother’s back. I’m kidding. 🙂 (Lord knows my back hurts enough carrying all this weight around.) I kept my eyes down to make sure I didn’t step in a hole or on an edge in the uneven sidewalk. Once I passed the party store I smiled. I had made it passed the party store without incident. Maybe I really would make it to the gas station.

My heart felt as if it was flushing out fat ensconced in long forgotten pockets within its chambers. I breathed deeper, heavier. The air was moist, it felt wonderful to walk and breathe and enjoy the peace and quiet of the morning without feeling there were any eyes on me. A couple of cars pulled up and waited for a green light at the intersection on the other side of the gas station. My steps quickened. The world was waking. I didn’t want them to see me.

I walked home celebrating my accomplishment with a smile and thoughts of “I should do this every morning” and “when will I do this again?”

It was a lovely way to start my day.